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this is "world news." tonight, rain of fire. families taking cover in israel and gaza. showered with rockets. even the holy city of jerusalem in distress. is a ground war next? fire in the gulf of mexico. an oil rig packed with workers bursts into flames. how could this happen again? an old treat is in trouble tonight. is it twilight for the twinkie? we'll tell you the big news and reveal the one thing we bet you never suspected was in that white goo. and our "person of the week," coming to the rescue, here to tell us the three things we must never do if we want thanksgiving to be great.
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good evening. as we come on the air, the holy city of jerusalem, under fire. images like these coming in from israel all day. dramatic pictures of families huddled in concrete pipes for safety. the world watching right now and asking, is the region even closer to the brink of war? we'll talk to abc's global affairs anchor christiane amanpour on the ground in jerusalem. first, we go to the gaza strip and abc's alex marquardt. >> reporter: good evening, diane. tonight, there are 20,000 israeli reservists who have been called up. tanks and troops are amassing along the border, not far from here. missiles and rockets have been flying back and forth. there has been no letup in this deadly escalation. sirens today in one of the
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most sacred cities in the world. jerusalem, a target for the first time in this bate. a rocket fell ten miles short. no one was hurt. in tel aviv, israelis ran for cover. in all, more tha 550 rockets now have been launched at israel, leaving the three dead. the military says a third have been intercepted by israel's famed iron dome anti-missile system. today, we saw where those rockets are coming from. clouds of smoke revealed a militant rocket launching site. we asked one of the militant groups behind the attacks what it would take to stop. as soon as israel stops attacking the gaza strip, you will stop firing at israel? "of course," he said. "we wouldn't fire rockets if israel wasn't killing us." for days, there has been almost no letup in the israel little war planes hammering of gaza. 30 palestinians have been
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killed, most of them civilians. at gaza's biggest hospital today, we saw a steady stream of wounded arriving, including children. in the icu, men with traumatic brain injuries. ahmed darmoush, 21, is brain dead, and doctors are not optimistic. are you able to cope if this escalationontinues? >> no, no. situation is stable. and if it continue, we can't. of course we can't. >> reporter: israel, however, is ready for a more drawn out fight. it was revealed today that israeliuthorities have prepared for seven weeks of fighting. so, diane, these are very tense times on both sides of the border tonight. >> thank you, alex. and now we bring in once again abc's global affairs anchor, christiane amanpour, in j jerusalem tonight. you were there. what did you see all around you today? >> reporter: well, diane, it is absolutely new.
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we heard this air raid siren go. and what happened was, hamas let go a rocket in this direction. you don't get a sense of general panic neither here nor at tel aviv. but people are concerned. they obviously don't want to be on the receiving end of any of these rockets. i think also one has to say that people are beginning to dig in for perhaps a long war. a long operation. >> so, give us a big picture sense of where it's heading. are we closer to the brink of the escalation tonight or has it pulled back any at all? >> reporter: i don't think it's pulled back any at all. they've already started closing roads around gaza. and everybody wants to know, what does that mean? people expect that there will be some kind of ground operation, but nobody knows quite when. and it looks like it could start the sort of escalation that could, as they say, be a war of attrition. sort of israel trying with all its might to stop these missiles. to go after the launching sites, to go after the operatives, but
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it's difficult. >> but it sounds as if you're saying to me that the next 24 to 48 hours are absolutely critical in which direction this goes. >> reporter: diane, i think that's absolutely right. is the next 24 to 48 hours will be critical to see which way this goes. if they're more long range rocket attacks, if they do target jerusalem, if they do inflict heavy casualties in places like tell say viv, that will change the equation. >> thank you so much, christiane, back in another turbulent region for abc tonight. and now we turn to a big story here in the united states tonight. an oil rig in the gulf of mexico bursts into flames. this picture of the fire reminding everyone of the massive bp oil leak two and a half years ago. how could something like this happen again? and happen 85 miles from the bp disaster. two workers are missing and four were critically injured. abc's matt gutman has the full story. >> reporter: the pair of explosions shot
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a pillar of black smoke over 1,000 feet into the air. the fireball seen over 20 miles away. >> you can make out a giant fireball and then another flash. >> reporter: and aboard the black elk gas and oil platform, an inferno engulfed some of the 22 workers doing routine maintenance. charring a corner od the platform, a massive search is on for two men who jumped into the water and are listed as missing. 11 others were medivaced, four of them with severe burns. >> these two patients are in critical condition with major burns. >> reporter: according to black elk, a workman used the wrong kind of blow torch to cut the section of pipeline indicated by these arrows, setting off the oil inside. but the oil was not actively producing oil or gas, meaning there's little threat of a spill, according to the coast guard. >> the platform was confirmed shut in, before they started work, so, a nonproduction platform at the time. >> reporter: and tonight, oil sheen covers less than a half a square mile of the gulf. just 28 gallons.
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not enough to fill a large suv's gas tank. bp's deepwater horizon spilled enough daily to fill 82,000 suvs. and this accident took place in just 50 feet of water. over 80 miles from the deepwater horizon drilling in water a mile deep. just yesterday, bp agreed to pay $4.5 billion in damages. to employees charged in the deaths of 11 men. since the disaster, safety rules have tightened with more visits to inspect rigs. but many of the new safety rules pertain to drilling rigs. this is one of the most dangerous operations in the world. since the new safety regulations were put in, five people were killed, diane. >> matt gutman on the story tonight. thank you, matt. now, we head off to washington, where all eyes were trained on a closed door on capitol hill. and the star witness inside, the
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embattled former cia director, david petraeus. he spoke briefly of the affair that ended his career, but the main topic, that attack on the u.s. consulate in benghazi. and abc's jonathan karl has the drama today. >> reporter: this afternoon, the first glimpse of david petraeus since he resigned as cia director. earlier, behind closed doors, petraeus began by expressing regret for the affair that ended his career. other than that ten-second apology, the hearings focused entirely on the attack on the u.s. kons late in benghazi, inla. petraeus told the intelligence committee that he knew from the beginning that the attack was the work of terrorists, not protesters. >> he thought all along, he made it clear, that there was significant terrorist involvement. >> reporter: but that's not what the white house was saying, including u.s. ambassador to the u.n., susan rice, who went on television days after the attack, tying it to protests in egypt against an anti-muslim
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video. but petraeus also told lawmakers that by the time declassified talking points were given to the white house and congress, r references to al qaeda were edited out to protect classified source. what rice said on tv was consistent with those edited and declassified talking points. >> what is very clear is that ambassador rice used the talking points that the intelligence committee had all signed off on. that is very, very clear. >> reporter: the white house says that the intelligence community did the editing and a senior u.s. intelligence official tells abc news tonight that there was no political interference whatsoever. but as you can imagine, diane, some republicans on cap titol hl say they are not convinced. >> thank you so much, jon. and as you know, a fewew blocks away at the white house, president obama met today with top congressional leaders about working together on that looming fiscal cliff. everyone emerged saying the
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meeting was, quote, constructive. bipartisan. house minority leader nancy pelosi, who sat down with abc's martha raddatz, said she's confident a solution is within reach. >> one of everybody wants to make the best effort to get this done. hopefully that is possible. hopefully it is possible by the middle of december, so the confidence of the markets and most importantly, the confidence of the consumers, returns to infuse our economy with demand, which creates jobs. >> and we will see more of nancy pelosi and martha when martha sits in for george stephanopoulos sunday morning, hosting "this week." and tonight, a town in west texas is grieving. it was supposed to be a celebration of veterans but that turned into a tragedy when the freight train smashed into a parade float. the parade float was stuck on
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the tracks in midland, texas, and then a screen described as a war zone, when heroes of war became heroes once again. army veterans pushing their wives to safe tip as the train roared towards them. but four of those veterans were on the float as the train hit, lost their lives and, today, federal investigators are still trying to sort out why this happened. and coming up here, after the break, on "world news," is it the end of the twinkie? is hostess getting ready to sell its secret recipe? and what is inside that white goo you may have never realized. [ male announcer ] it's simple physics... a body at rest tends to stay at rest... while a body in motion tends to stay in motion. staying active can actually ease arthritis symptoms. but if you have arthritis, staying active can be difficult. prescription celebrex can help relieve arthritis pain so your body can stay in motion. because just one 200mg celebrex a day
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grow. they give your child energy to go on. plus -- protein to grow on. >> reporter: what hasn't been growing -- hostess' bottom line. sales dropped as moms began swapping out those fat-filled goodies and white bread for healthier lunch box foods. but a bitter nationwide workers strike that ended in a stalemate may be the final nail in a cream-filled coffin. the 82-year-old american icon plans to shutter its factory doors and let 18,000 workers go. >> it will be very sad because these brands are iconic. they've been around for decades. >> reporter: but this is nothing like mom could make. if you think you're going to miss this twinkie -- don't even try to make this at home. there are 37 ingredients in this little cake. many you'd expect. some flour, lots of sugar, corn syrup. but how about corn dextrin? that's the sticky glue found on the back of envelopes. and that smooth creamy center made from cellulose gum.
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that's used in hair gel, shampoo, even rocket fuel. some predict a buyer may swoop in and buy the twinkie. >> i think they could have a resurrection. maybe it will be true that they can live for 1,000 years. >> reporter: and so it seems even if the twinkie goes away, it will live in american hearts, maybe even cup boards, forever. cecilia vega, abc news, los angeles. and coming up, a little boy who was abandoned at a firehouse ten years ago, saved by a firefighter, what was the boy's one birthday wish? see a beautiful, happy ending todath you are one of ns of men who have used androgel 1%, there's big news. presenting androgel 1.62%. both are used to treat men with low testosterone. androgel 1.62% is from the makers of the number one prescribed testosterone replacement therapy. it raises your testosterone levels, and...
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designed for people with high blood pressure. and the only one i use to relieve my cold symptoms without raising my blood pressure. coricidin hbp. and now, here's what made it to the top of our "instant index" this evening, which is all about saying hello and good-bye tonight. starting with this quote. "hey, it's nice to meet you, finally." it's from firefighter wesley in texas it was a reunion one decade in the making. a boy celebrating his 10th birthday, meeting the firefighter. he had been abandoned as a baby outside a fire station on an early morning in 2002. he spotted the baby in a baby carrier, brought him inside, the infant taken to safety and adopted. the firefighter kept a picture of the baby on his desk all these years and, last night, they finally met again.
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and, an historical hello to a ship buried for more than 90 years. so many searching for it today online. it's a wrecked four-masted scooner, thought to be the "bessy white." you see the original ship there. the wreck, now fully exposed off long island new york. it ran aground in heavy fog. the gir crew escaped to shore. but get this, it was hurricane sandy that ripped off the layers of sand and time that had been hiding it for all these years. and we, we showed you a whale last night, but look at this video. a menacing fin coming right after that dog who was jus in for a swim. it's a killer whale. and the big guy seemed to be saying, "no room for a mutt here. get out of my territory." and we really do want to hear what's capturing your imagine nation every day, so, tweet me your thoughts for the "instant index," @dianesawyer.
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and coming up, as preparations begin this weekend, three things you must never do if you want a great thanksgiving. can you guess them? advice from our wise and funny "person of the week." [ male announcer ] this is bob,
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a regular guy with an irregular heartbeat. the usual, bob? not today. [ male announcer ] bob has afib: atrial fibrillation not caused by a heart valve problem, a condition that puts him at greater risk for a stroke. [ gps ] turn left. i don't think so. [ male announcer ] for years, bob took warfarin, and made a monthly trip to the clinic to get his blood tested. but not anymore. bob's doctor recommended a different option: once-a-day xarelto®. xarelto® is the first and only once-a-day prescription blood thinner for patients with afib not caused by a heart valve problem, that doesn't require routine blood monitoring. like warfarin, xarelto® is proven effective to reduce the risk of an afib-related stroke. there is limited data on how these drugs compare when warfarin is well managed.
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ready to change your routine? ask your doctor about once-a-day xarelto®. for more information including cost support options, call 1-888-xarelto or visit and finally tonight, our "person of the week." a powerful newsman who just wants to make sure all of us have a great thanksgiving. he's even written a book about it. he is famously drol and funny and he loves that family day. >> norman rockwell painting, called "freedom from one." and here is kindly grandma with this giant burnished bird and grandpa behind her and the
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spit-shined kids around the table waiting for this holiday. all of this, in some measure, are looking to recreate some part of that. >> reporter: sam sifton, national editor of "the new york times", once the times food critic, that knows that thanksgiving is about anticipation, along with anxiety and stress. >> do i have enough plates? do i have enough glasses? am i really going to have a table cloth? can i use a sheet? that's cheap. maybe i should -- well, maybe it's good. what do i do about uncle morty who is an alcoholic? he's got to be there. but he gets drunk. and i thought, it might be helpful just to say, everything's going to be okay. it's a pretty simple meal, when you really think about it. you're roasting a giant chicken. your mashing some potatoes. you're mashing almost everything. it's basically piles of mush on a plate with slices of big chicken. >> reporter: sifton says he learned to take out the stress
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by following just a few absolute rules. >> you must not serve appetizers. the scent of the turkey is enough to stir your hunger. and i certainly am not going to spend all day roasting a turkey so that you can come into my home and eat two pounds of nuts and then refuse seconds. that's just rude. you must not serve a salad. this is not a place for health. this is thanksgiving. so, let us speak painly about butter. there's going to be a lot of butter. i think it is not incorrect to lay in at least two pounds of butter for the day. you need to have pie at the end. there's no place for chocolate. at thanksgiving. that's good for depressing nights. for, unfortunate birthdays, things of this nature. it's not for thanksgiving. >> reporter: and by the way, he says no one ever judged you because you bought your cranberry sauce. but most of all, sifton says,
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set your table as a kind of sacrament. whether it's a sheet, a table cloth, add some candles. whatever makes it an occasion at your house. >> this changes the behavior of the people who gather at the table. children are better behaved by this kind of special thing before them and if you can take that moment at the beginning of the meal to say a grace, to look everyone at the table in the eye and say, i want to say thanks, i want to give thanks for your presence, that's the purpose of the whole thing, right? it's the one holiday that all americans really, really gather together to celebrate. more than the fourth of july, i would argue. more than christmas. >> and so we choose sam sifton and his happy survival kit of a book. more of his wise advice at but for a moment, i want to go back to that famous rockwell painting. did you know the woman right there in front is rockwell's
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wife, mary? and that is his mother, with the white hair. he painted them 70 years ago. and all of the people around that table have now left us. but left us with a reminder to give thanks when our modern american families gather at our tables next week. and we thank you for this week. "20/20" will be here later. and anchor david muir will be right here in this chair all weekend. good night.
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